Playing at home has its advantages. It's just like hosting a dinner party, in the knowledge you can pop upstairs and fetch some family memory to provide a perfect conversation starter. This is pretty much what happened last night, when we moved not far from the track in Monza and hosted more than 70 international media at the Alfa Romeo Museum in Arese: a chance for us to show the brand's incredible heritage in the historical setting of the old Alfa Romeo headquarters, just outside Milan.
Racing runs in the blood at Alfa Romeo. Luckily, we had two top drivers at hand in the shape of Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi, our duo tackling a range of historical racing cars on Alfa Romeo's own test track. We can tell you, it wasn't just our guests who had a great time last night...
The heavens, somewhat inopportunely, opened up to bring the track action to an end - perhaps a warning sign of the wet Friday we'd experience the following day. Our merry party moved indoors as we unveiled the special livery we will use on the Italian Grand Prix weekend: a green stripe added in strategic places and combining with our traditional white and red to create the Italian flag's tricolore. And in the end, our guests' deep dive in Alfa's history did not stop with the arrival of the foul weather. The Museum in Arese hosts one of the most incredible collections of historical cars, from 1930s jewels to iconic 80s models: it was a treat for our media friends, as a cursory look on their social media channels would attest...
Kimi Raikkonen: "Not a great start with my crash in FP1 but to be honest we didn't really lose precious time as the mixed conditions continued and therefore no one could do any proper work. Same story in the afternoon, so even if the car felt good and we put in some good lap times we have to wait until tomorrow to see where exactly we are."
Antonio Giovinazzi: "The conditions weren't ideal today: the rain made it a bit tricky but in the end it's the same for everybody and it was good to do some laps in the wet. It'll be interesting to see what the weather does tomorrow and on Sunday, but our focus won't change: we just need to work hard to get where we want. Qualifying will be tight once again. We will push to find the best setup tonight and to get a good result in qualifying."